Q: How should I evaluate the quality of joints/seams?
Seams should be in compliance with annual guidelines set forth by the Marble Institute of America, which states that no seam should measure greater than 1/16 inch in width at any point of the seam.
Buyer should also expect the seam to rise slightly above the granite surface. By nature, darker granite colors such as blacks and greens will have more noticeable seams than lighter colors.
Stones with naturally larger crystals will have more noticeable seams due to possible chipping during the cutting process. Embedded crystalline minerals such as quartz are hard substrates to cut. Hence some counters will have tiny chips along the seams where there used to be embedded crystals.
Q: Should I expect color variation?
Stone is a natural material with inherent variations of color, pattern, and surface textures. Our customers have the opportunity to choose all applicable materials available from our inventory to help best match their tastes with our current inventory.
Q: Do I need to have all appliances to be present at time of installation?
Yes. All appliances, such as sinks, stoves, cook tops, faucets, hoods, and microwaves MUST be present at the time of installation; however, these items do not need to be installed upon the arrival of the Artistic Stone installers.
Q: How do I choose my sink?
Buyer must purchase a sink designed specifically for use with granite countertops. If you are unsure, ask your sink dealer whether a sink is suitable for a granite countertop. All Artistic Stone sinks are intended for granite substrates.
Q: Can I reuse my existing sink?
Unfortunately, an existing undermount sink can never be reused with a new granite countertop. If you want an undermount sink, you must purchase one prior to installation. There is a small chance that a topmount sink can be reused, however it depends on the current conditions of that sink. Artistic Stone installers will examine the topmount sink upon arrival and determine whether it can be reused. We recommend that the buyer have a backup topmount sink ready, in case the current topmount sink cannot be reused.
Q: Do you send your estimator to my house to measure my kitchen?
For jobs using prefabricated materials, normally Artistic Stone will NOT conduct on site measurements prior to installation. In order to give you an accurate pricing quote, all we need are the lengths and widths of the areas you want to cover with granite countertops in a simple drawing or sketch.
An Artistic Stone representative will verify these measurements with you when working on your quote and will confirm your measurements on the first day of installation prior to any work. If any additional services or materials are required to complete the job, Artistic Stone will inform you prior to any cutting or fabrication.
Q: In what situation will Artistic Stone take more than 2 days to finish my counter top installation?
1) Should the bar top, island or peninsula in the buyer’s kitchen require off site fabrication, Artistic Stone will template those areas on the scheduled date and bring the template(s) back to the workshop for fabrication. Artistic Stone will reschedule another date with the buyer to install the fabricated piece(s). Buyer should expect Artistic Stone to return for installation within 5-10 business days.
2) Artistic Stone must take site measurements prior to installation only for jobs that require the use of custom granite slabs (not prefabricated) or for jobs with space limitations that restrict any fabrication from being performed on site. After the initial template, Artistic Stone will begin installing the granite within 10-14 business days. Artistic Stone will call the buyer to set up an installation time once the template has been taken.
Q: Do you reconnect gas lines, electricity and plumbing in my house?
No. Artistic Stone WILL NOT reconnect gas lines, electricity and plumbing, since we are not licensed in these areas. However, Artistic Stone WILL shut off the water before installations. Under no condition will we reconnect plumbing and gas. Please refrain from requesting this of our installers as we will not assume any responsibility if you do so.
Q: Do you reinstall the mirror above my vanity top?
No. We DO NOT remove mirrors and that it is the customer’s responsibility to make sure that mirrors are removed prior to us starting any work. Artistic Stone will NOT reinstall the mirror under any circumstance. The buyer must find a professional mirror company or contractor to reinstall the mirror.
Q: Can I perform the demolition of my old counter tops?
Yes, this is an option. However, you need to perform the demolition in such a manner as to not directly affect the structural integrity of the existing cabinets. Artistic Stone will assess the condition of the cabinets prior to installation. Should we assess that the cabinets are not suitable for installation, our project manager will work with you to reschedule an install date once the cabinets have been fixed back to a satisfactory condition. The job site must be completely clear of all debris and any old backsplash must be completely removed.
Q: Do you repair drywall?
No. All walls adjacent to countertops and backsplashes should be leveled prior to installation. Artistic Stone is NOT responsible for leveling walls, repairing drywall, or touching up paint. The buyer may contract with a drywall specialist to repair any drywall imperfection prior to or after the installation of the granite. Warping in walls will create gaps between newly installed countertops/backsplashes and the wall. Artistic Stone is NOT responsible for repairing drywall damage resulting in the demolition. It is impossible to leave drywall and paint in perfect condition should existing countertops be removed from a base wall. If the drywall repair is not significant, Artistic Stone will replace or fix the sheetrock. The buyer will be charged $200.00 by Artistic Stone to fix the drywall. Drywall repair will consist of spackling holes and replacing damaged wall sections.
Artistic Stone will not tape, smooth or finish the drywall. If the wall is not straight due to the frame, Artistic Stone will follow the frame. If the need for repair is significant, the Buyer must find a general contractor to make repairs. Once fixed, the Buyer can call Artistic Stone to reschedule an install date.
Should there be a gap over 1/2 inch wide between the cabinets and the wall directly behind them, there is a possibility that there will be a gap between the wall and the back of the granite countertops. This is due to the fact that the wall is not completely straight. The Buyer needs to fix the wall in order to ensure that there is no gap between the wall and the granite countertop. Should there be a gap less than 1/2 inch wide between the cabinets and the wall directly behind them, the installers may elect to slide the countertop out in order to compensate for the irregularities in the wall. This will cause a small void between the edge of the plywood and fabricated ends of the granite countertops. The void will not affect the structural integrity of the granite.
Q: I do understand granite installation creates lots of dust. What is the best way to control dust?
Dust control is a joint effort by Artistic Stone and our customers. Artistic Stone will put down a drop cloth to cover the floors and base cabinets (if necessary) before demolition. This will help prevent dust from spreading in the kitchen and any debris from damaging the flooring. The demolition process will create dust that cannot be avoided. Buyer should cover nearby furniture, and remove any items that could be damaged by dust. Our customers should also remove all drawers and kitchenware under the counter. On-site fabrication and installation creates significant levels of dust, debris, and waste water. Artistic Stone will make every effort to contain such pollution during the installation process, but we cannot guarantee a clean working site during the course of installation. Artistic Stone can guarantee that the job site will be left in a similar condition than it was immediately prior to the installation.
Q: What should I know about faucet hole drilling?
Included in the buyer’s contract is the allowance of up to four custom drilled holes for faucets, soap dispensers, air vents, etc. In order to ensure a perfect fit, our customers must have ALL faucet pieces available at the time of installation. Our customers need to check if faucet pieces fit before the installer leaves the job site. The faucet threads must be able to accommodate 1 3/8 inch width.
Q: What should I know about plywood and leveling?
By California Building Code, if the cabinet is not level to within 1/4 inch in 8 feet, Artistic Stone WILL NOT be able to continue with the installation until the our customers resolves the issue.
Q: Can I install the plywood on my own?
Yes. You will need to use 5/8 inch plywood on regular cabinets and 3/4 inch plywood on European style cabinets. The plywood must be screwed to the cabinet tops. All cabinet surfaces must be completely level, especially where two separate pieces join together. The maximum level tolerance is 1/8 inch every 4 feet. You should NOT cut out the cook-top, sink, or faucet holes in the plywood prior to the granite installation. Artistic Stone installers will cut out the holes on site.
Q: What do I need to know about granite overhang?
If the kitchen design calls for an overhang LARGER THAN 6 INCHES, on an island, bar top, peninsula or countertop, Artistic Stone recommends that the customer install metal supports or wood brackets. Artistic Stone can install metal supports but not brackets. Artistic Stone will charge $200.00 extra to install the metal supports.
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